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User interface with parallax animation
8250494 User interface with parallax animation
Patent Drawings:Drawing: 8250494-10    Drawing: 8250494-6    Drawing: 8250494-7    Drawing: 8250494-8    Drawing: 8250494-9    
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Inventor: Butcher, et al.
Date Issued: August 21, 2012
Application: 12/484,845
Filed: June 15, 2009
Inventors: Butcher; Larry R. (Seattle, WA)
Friedman; Jonathan D. (Seattle, WA)
Voss; Chad Aron (Seattle, WA)
Kruzeniski; Michael J. (Seattle, WA)
Assignee: Microsoft Corporation (Redmond, WA)
Primary Examiner: Bashore; William
Assistant Examiner: Tank; Andrew
Attorney Or Agent: Wolfe-SBMC
U.S. Class: 715/863; 345/173; 715/766; 715/799; 715/850
Field Of Search: 715/782; 715/797; 715/840; 715/863; 715/702; 715/719; 715/764; 715/766; 715/768; 715/799; 715/848; 715/849; 715/850; 715/858; 345/173; 345/174; 345/175; 345/176; 345/177; 345/178
International Class: G06F 3/033; G06F 3/041; G06F 3/048
U.S Patent Documents:
Foreign Patent Documents: 102197702; 0583060; 1752868; 2004227393; 2004357257; 200303655; 20060019198; 1020070036114; 1020070098337; 20070120368; 1020080025951; 1020080076390; 100854333; 1020080084156; 1020080113913; 1020090041635; 201023026; WO-2005026931; WO-2005027506; WO-2006019639; WO-2007121557; WO-2007134623; WO-2008031871; WO-2008035831; WO-2009000043; WO-2009049331; WO-2010048229; WO-2010048448; WO-2010048519; WO-2010117643; WO-2010135155
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Abstract: User interface animation techniques are described. In an implementation, an input having a velocity is detected that is directed to one or more objects in a user interface. A visual presentation is generated that is animated so a first object in the user interface moves in parallax with respect to a second object. The presentation is displayed so the first object appears to moves at a rate that corresponds to the velocity.
Claim: What is claimed is:

1. A computer-implemented method comprising: detecting an input, via touchscreen functionality of a display device of the computer, that has a velocity and is directed to oneor more objects in a user interface displayed on the display device; responsive to the detecting, generating a presentation by the computer that includes a parallax animation of the one or more objects; and displaying the presentation that includes theparallax animation in the user interface on the display device, the parallax animation configured to continue after the detected input that has a velocity is completed.

2. A computer-implemented method as described in claim 1, wherein the presentation is displayed when at least one of the one or more objects is available for selection to access additional information for display in the user interface.

3. A computer-implemented method as described in claim 1, wherein the one or more objects include: a photograph; an icon; a shortcut; a label; or visual content.

4. A computer-implemented method as described in claim 1, wherein the displaying of the parallax animation associated with the input is performed such that as the animation nears termination at least one of the one or more object's motionappears to dampen.

5. A computer-implemented method as described in claim 1, wherein: the input is a gesture received via touchscreen functionality of the computer; and the displaying is performed so the one or more objects move in a direction of the gesture.

6. A computer-implemented method as described in claim 1, wherein the computer is configured as a mobile communications device that includes telephone functionality.

7. A computer-implemented method as described in claim 1, wherein: the one or more objects appear in a corresponding one of a plurality of layers according to type; and each said layer is assigned a different speed in the parallax animationfor moving respective said objects that are included in the layer.

8. A mobile communications device comprising: a display device having touchscreen functionality; and user interface module to generate a user interface that includes objects for output on the display device, the user interface module beingconfigured to: associate an apparent distance with each said object from a screen of the display device; generate a presentation of the objects in response to detection of a gesture that has a direction and a velocity; and display the presentationincluding a parallax animation so a first said object that appears closer to the screen moves at a rate that is greater than that of a second said object that appears farther away from the screen, the first and second said objects being moved in adirection that corresponds to the gesture, the parallax animation configured to continue after completion of the gesture.

9. A mobile communications device as described in claim 8, wherein the second said object is a picture and the first said object comprises one or more of: a label or a border.

10. A mobile communications device as described in claim 8, wherein the first said object is included in a layer that is appears closer to the screen than a layer that includes the second said object.

11. A mobile communications device as described in claim 8, wherein the gesture includes a pan-and-drag of a user's finger in the direction.

12. A mobile communications device as described in claim 8, wherein each said object is included in a respective one of a plurality of layers based on object type.

13. A mobile communications device as described in claim 8, further comprising one or more modules to provide telephone functionality and wherein the user interface includes objects that relate to the telephone functionality.

14. One or more computer-readable storage media comprising instructions that are executable on a mobile communications device to provide a user interface that is operable to: generate a presentation that is animated to follow a gesture receivedusing touchscreen functionality of a display device of the mobile communications device, the presentation including a plurality of objects that are available for selection and each said object is included in a respective one of a plurality of layersbased on object type; and display the presentation on a display device of the mobile communications device to include the animation so a first said object appears to move in parallax with respect to one or more other said objects, the movement inparallax configured to continue after completion of the gesture.

15. One or more computer-readable media as described in claim 14, wherein the other said objects included in the layer are perceived as having a different distance from a surface of the display device than another said object in a differentlayer.

16. One or more computer-readable media as described in claim 14, wherein at least one said object type is text that is assigned to a first said layer and another said object type is images assigned to another said layer, the first said layerexclusively comprising said text object type and the another said layer exclusively comprising said images object type.

17. One or more computer-readable media as described in claim 14, wherein the presentation is generated in response to detection of the gesture and the first said object is associated with information available for display in the userinterface.

18. One or more computer-readable media as described in claim 14, wherein the parallax motion of the first said object is related to a velocity detected for the gesture.

19. One or more computer-readable media as described in claim 14, wherein the first said object's motion dampens from a velocity associated with the gesture as the display of the animation nears termination.

20. One or more computer-readable media as described in claim 14, where in the first said object's motion includes a bounce mimicking an elastic collision.
Description: BACKGROUND

User interfaces may use animation to provide a variety of information. For example, user interfaces may use animation to indicate an occurrence of an event (e.g., a user interaction), transition between information (e.g., scan a document), andso on. Often times, users come to associate particular information with a particular type of animation. For instance, a user may drag a slide bar button to display different information in a user interface. Accordingly, the user may associate the scananimation with the dragging the slide bar button, e.g., in a cause and effect relationship. However, the user may be confused when a particular type of animation is reused to convey different information that does not relate to the dragging of the slidebar.

SUMMARY

User interface animation techniques are described. In an implementation, an input is detected that has a velocity and is directed to one or more objects in a user interface. A presentation is generated responsive to the detection that includesa parallax animation of the one or more objects. The presentation that includes the parallax animation is displayed on the display device.

In an implementation, a mobile communication comprises a display device and a user interface module. The user interface module is configured to generate a user interface that includes objects for output on the display device, which isconfigured to detect a gesture. The user interface module is configured to associate an apparent distance with each object in the user interface from a screen included in the display device. The user interface module generates a presentation of theobjects in response to detection of the gesture that has a direction and a velocity. The presentation is displayed so a first object that appears closer to the screen moves at a rate that is greater than that of a second object that appears farther awayfrom the screen than the first object. The first object moves at the rate and in a direction that matches the tactile input's velocity and direction.

In an implementation, one or more computer-readable media comprise instructions that are executable to provide a user interface. The user interface is operable to generate a presentation that is animated. The presentation includes a pluralityof objects that are available for selection. Each of the objects is included in a layer with other objects of a same object type. The presentation is displayed on a display device so a first object appears to move in parallax with respect to one ormore of the other objects.

This Summary is provided to introduce a selection of concepts in a simplified form that are further described below in the Detailed Description. This Summary is not intended to identify key features or essential features of the claimed subjectmatter, nor is it intended to be used as an aid in determining the scope of the claimed subject matter.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The detailed description is described with reference to the accompanying figures. In the figures, the left-most digit(s) of a reference number identifies the figure in which the reference number first appears. The use of the same referencenumbers in different instances in the description and the figures may indicate similar or identical items.

FIG. 1 is an illustration of an environment in an example implementation that is operable to implement parallax animation.

FIG. 2A is an illustration showing an example of parallax animation.

FIG. 2B is an illustration showing animation movement and direction that corresponds to an input.

FIG. 3 is an illustration of a system in an example implementation showing a mobile communications device with a user interface configured to perform parallax animation.

FIG. 4 is an illustration of the user interface of FIG. 3 that implements multiple motion layers that include a plurality of objects.

FIG. 5 is a flow diagram depicting a procedure in an example implementation involving parallax animation.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Overview

User interfaces permit users to interact with various applications, information, and so on. User interfaces may include a plurality of objects that are visible and selectable by to a user to access additional information, which may includelaunching an application, "opening" a file, and so forth. Example objects include but are not limited to icons, shortcuts, banners, dialog boxes, buttons, menus, text tags, photographs, backgrounds, a pointer (e.g., an arrow), borders, and so forth. Inaddition, user interfaces may use animation to convey information, such as to indicate an input is received, or to provide information about an object.

After time, users may associate the animation with an underlying function. For example, a user may associate navigation through a document with a point-and-drag input. As a result, the user may become confused when the animation is reused toconvey different information.

Parallax animation techniques are described, such as to indicate that information is associated with one or more objects presented in the user interface. For instance, the user interface may display a presentation having an animation in whichone or more of the objects appear to move in parallax. The parallax motion may be used for a variety of functionality. For example, parallax motion may indicate that additional information is available for presentation in the user interface and expressthat the user interface has depth, e.g., a user may "dive-in" to the user interface to access information, such as through a transition to additional information.

In the following discussion, an example environment, systems, and a user interface are first described that are operable to perform parallax animation. Example procedures are then described that may be implemented using the example environmentas well as other environments. Accordingly, implementation of the procedures is not limited to the environment and the environment is not limited to implementation of the procedures.

Example Environment

FIG. 1 is an illustration of an example implementation 100 of a mobile communications device 102 in accordance with one or more embodiments of devices, features, and systems for mobile communications. The mobile communications device 102 isoperable to assume a plurality of configurations, examples of which include a configuration as illustrated in FIG. 1 in which the mobile communications device 102 is "open" and a configuration in which the mobile communications device 102 is "closed" asillustrated in FIGS. 2-3.

The mobile communications device 102 is further illustrated as including a first housing 104 and a second housing 106 that are connected via a slide 108 such that the first and second housings 104, 106 may move (e.g., slide) in relation to oneanother. Although sliding is described, it should be readily apparent that a variety of other movement techniques are also contemplated, e.g., a pivot, a hinge and so on.

The first housing 104 includes a display device 110 that may be used to output a variety of content, such as a caller identification (ID), contacts, images (e.g., photos) as illustrated, email, multimedia messages, Internet browsing, game play,music, video and so on. In an implementation, the display device 110 is configured to function as an input device by incorporating touchscreen functionality, e.g., through capacitive, surface acoustic wave, resistive, optical, strain gauge, dispersivesignals, acoustic pulse, and other touchscreen functionality. The touchscreen functionality (as well as other functionality such as track pads) may be used to detect gestures, further discussion of which may be found in relation to FIGS. 2-5.

The second housing 106 is illustrated as including a keyboard 112 that may also be used to provide inputs to the mobile communications device 102. Although the keyboard 112 is illustrated as a QWERTY keyboard, a variety of other examples arealso contemplated, such as a keyboard that follows a traditional telephone keypad layout (e.g., a twelve key numeric pad found on basic telephones), keyboards configured for other languages (e.g., Cyrillic), and so on.

The mobile communications device 102 is also illustrated as including a communication module 114. The communication module 114 is representative of functionality of the mobile communications device 102 to communicate via a network 116. Forexample, the communication module 114 may include telephone functionality to make and receive telephone calls. The communication module 114 may also include a variety of other functionality, such as to capture content, form short message service (SMS)text messages, multimedia messaging service (MMS) messages, emails, status updates to be communicated to a social network service, and so on. A user, for instance, may input a status update for communication via the network 116 to a social networkservice. The social network service may then publish the status update to "friends" of the user, e.g., for receipt by the friends via a computer, respective mobile communications devices, and so on. A variety of other examples are also contemplated,such as blogging, instant messaging, and so on.

The mobile communications device 102 is also illustrated as including a user interface module 118. The user interface module 118 is representative of functionality of the mobile communications device 102 to generate, manage, and/or output auser interface 120 for display on the display device 110 that may employ parallax animation, e.g., parallax pan and scroll. The user interface 120, for example, may implement parallax animation techniques to indicate the availability of information thatis associated with one or more objects that are visible in the user interface. Information may include information about an event (e.g., an input has been received), information that is associated with an object (e.g., pictures that are available to beviewed), and so on. For instance, the user interface may use parallax animation to express that an object includes information. This may permit the user to "dive-into" the user interface to transition between information.

As further illustrated, the user interface module 118 includes an input module 122 and an animation module 124. The input module 122 is representative of functionality to determine whether received inputs (e.g., via the touch screen) correspondto a function of the user interface 120. For instance, the input module 122 may check a table of inputs to determine whether an input corresponds to a function provided by the user interface 120 by determining a direction and/or velocity for the inputand comparing data that describes this input to the table. The direction and velocity may be determined in a variety of ways, such as by interpreting signals received via an input device (e.g., a mouse, contact sensors in the touchscreen, and so on).

The animation module 124 is representative of functionally to generate a presentation in which the objects in the user interface 120 are animated so the objects move in a parallax manner. Thus, the animation may give an appearance of display ofthe object as seen from two or more different points that are not on a line with the object.

The animation module 124 may provide the presentation upon receipt of an input that corresponds to the parallax animation. For example, the objects included in the user interface may appear to pan or scroll in parallax in response to a draginput. The user interface may use parallax animation to indicate (e.g. provide a visual cue) that one or more of the objects is associated with information. Thus, the use of parallax animation in the user interface may convey a rich viewing experienceto indicate the availability of information for display on the display device 110 and to transition between the information. Moreover, a user interface that implements parallax animation (e.g., parallax pan, parallax scroll) may help to minimize userconfusion associated with the reuse of conventional animations in the user interface.

Generally, the functions described herein can be implemented using software, firmware, hardware (e.g., fixed logic circuitry), manual processing, or a combination of these implementations. The terms "module," "functionality," "service," and"logic" as used herein generally represent software, firmware, hardware, or a combination of software, firmware, or hardware. In the case of a software implementation, the module, functionality, or logic represents program code that performs specifiedtasks when executed on a processor (e.g., CPU or CPUs). The program code may be stored in one or more computer-readable memory devices (e.g., one or more tangible media), and so on. The structures, functions, approaches, and techniques described hereinmay be implemented on a variety of commercial computing platforms having a variety of processors.

In additional embodiments, a variety of devices may make use of the structures, techniques, approaches, modules, and so on described herein. Thus, although the mobile communications device 102 is described throughout this document, a variety ofdevices, such as personal computers, mobile computing devices, smart phones, personal digital assistants, laptops, and so on may make use of the described techniques, approaches, structures, and so on. The devices may be configured with limitedfunctionality (e.g., thin devices) or with robust functionality (e.g., thick devices). Thus, a device's functionality may relate to the device's software or hardware resources, e.g., processing power, memory (e.g., data storage capability), and so on. Having discussed the example environment 100, parallax animation is now described in conjunction with sample user interfaces.

FIG. 2A depicts an example illustration of a presentation 200 that includes a parallax animation. Parallax animation may cause objects in the user interface to move about a display device. Parallax animation in the illustrated example refersgenerally to motion in which objects that are closer to a viewpoint (e.g., a screen of the display device 110) move faster than objects that are farther away from the viewpoint.

In parallax animation, the perspective of the viewer may appear to move from a starting viewpoint to an ending viewpoint. Thus, when a user views a user interface that implements parallax animation (e.g., user interface 120), the user mayperceive that an object in the background may shift when displayed with respect to an object in a mid-ground or foreground. As a result, the user may perceive that a first object that appears closer to the viewer (e.g., a screen in the display device110) moves faster than a second object that appears farther away from the display device's screen.

In the illustrated example, as the viewpoint of the presentation 200 moves from viewpoint 1 to viewpoint 2, the first object (e.g., the tree in the mid-ground) and the background objects (e.g., objects A and B) appears to shift to reveal objectB. Object A (also in the background) is also blocked by the tree as the displayed viewpoint moves from viewpoint 1 to viewpoint 2. The foregoing description and illustration are provided by way of example for use in understanding the modules,techniques, approaches, and so on described herein. In some instances, the user interface's parallax animation may be pinned to a point, e.g., a corner of the display device's screen. For example, corner pinning may be used so objects may appear tovanish toward a corner or edge of the screen.

In one or more embodiments, parallax animation is combined with other visual presentation techniques to increase the likelihood that a user "believes" that the objects are in motion. For example, objects in the background may be scaled toappear smaller than objects in the foreground, objects may overlay other objects (e.g., an opaque tag overlays a picture), and so on.

FIG. 2B illustrates an example implementation of a user interface animation that corresponds to an input 202. An object that moves in parallax may move in a direction and at a velocity that is related to the input's direction and velocity. Forexample, the input 202 may correspond to a gesture that is received via the touchscreen functionality of the display device 110. The gesture has a direction and a velocity that correspond to the dragging the user's finger across the display device 110. The parallax animation corresponds to this gesture such that the objects "follow" the gesture using parallax movement.

Additionally, the velocity of the input 202 and an object's velocity (e.g., illustrated as an arrow 204) in the user interface may be proportionally related. For instance, the object may move at a velocity that is half the velocity of theinput. In another instance, an object's velocity and movement matches the velocity of the input 202.

In further embodiments, some objects may move at a rate that matches the input's velocity while other objects that are appear further away from the surface of the display device 110 move at a rate that is related (e.g., proportional) to theinput's velocity, e.g., 80% of the input velocity.

Additionally, the user interface may be configured so an object's velocity appears to slow down as the animation nears termination. For example, movement of the object may appear to dampen from an original velocity to where the object does notmove. In this way, the object may appear to slow down as if acted on by gravity, e.g., as if the object was kicked.

In further instances, an object may bounce before the object's motion is terminated. For example, the object may bounce as if the object experienced an elastic collision with an immovable object, e.g., an edge of the display device 110. In oneexample, an object's bounce mimics an F-curve with a duration of approximately 1.7 seconds and an approximately one-tenth of a second bounce offset.

As illustrated in FIG. 3, an example system 300 is shown in which the mobile communications device 102 is shown as assuming a "brick" configuration and includes a user interface 302 (which may be the same or different from the user interface 120of FIG. 1) that is configured to perform parallax animation. The user interface 302 includes objects, such as photographs (e.g., a photograph of Larry 304), title tags (e.g., a tag "Larry" 306), and borders, e.g., border 308. The user interface module118 generates a presentation 310, for display in the user interface 302, in which the photographs, title tags, boards, and so on are displayed as part of a parallax animation.

For example, the photographs and title tags may move in parallax in response to an input (e.g., a user's finger against the display device 110) that is dragged across the display device 110. In this example parallax animation, the title tagsmove at a greater velocity than a velocity at which the photographs that are included in the user interface move, both of which occur as the input is received, e.g., the user's finger is moved.

In an implementation, the user interface module 118 generates the presentation to transition between information in the user interface, e.g., photographs in a "home screen." For example, one of the photographs may be associated with an updatethat is available for display in the user interface 302. Therefore, the parallax animation may be used to transition from the photographs to the update. A variety of other examples are also contemplated, such as to move between different screens of theuser interface 302.

Reference will now be made to FIG. 4 in which the user interface 302 of FIG. 3 is illustrated in further detail. In the illustrated embodiment, the objects in the user interface 302 are associated with (e.g., included in) various layers toprovide different amounts of motion. Example layers include but are not limited to a foreground layer 402, a mid-ground layer 404, and a background layer 406.

The layers may be used to define a corresponding behavior of the objects in the layer to output the parallax animation. For example, the background layer 406 (and consequently objects included in the background layer) may appear to move slowerthan objects in the foreground layer 402 or in the mid-ground layer 404. In an implementation, objects in the background (e.g., photographs) may move at a predetermined ratio to the input's velocity while name tags move at a matching velocity of theinput, e.g., the dragging of the finger across the display device 110.

In one or more embodiments, objects are arranged into a particular one of the layers based on the object's type. In the illustrated example, photographs are included in the background layer 406 and tags (and other textual information) areincluded in the foreground layer 402. The mid-ground layer 404 is used to define borders in this example, although a variety of other examples are also contemplated.

Example Procedures

The following discussion describes procedures that may be implemented utilizing the previously described systems, techniques, approaches, services, and modules. Aspects of each of the procedures may be implemented in hardware, firmware,software, or a combination thereof. The procedures are shown as a set of blocks that specify operations performed by one or more devices (e.g., computers) and are not necessarily limited to the orders shown for performing the operations by therespective blocks. In portions of the following discussion, reference will be made to the environment 100 of FIG. 1 and the user interfaces of FIGS. 2-4.

FIG. 5 depicts a procedure 500 in an example implementation in which parallax animation techniques are implemented to indicate information availability. An input is detected that is associated with parallax animation (block 502). As previouslydescribed, the input may be detected in a variety of ways, such as by using touchscreen functionality of the display device 110 of the mobile communications device 102, a touchpad, use of a cursor control device, and so on. For example, a gesture may bedetected using touchscreen functionality of the display device 110 to pan between different screens of the user interface 120.

A presentation that includes a plurality of objects is generated (block 504) for display in a user interface. The presentation may include one or more objects that move in a direction and at a velocity that is related to an input that triggeredgeneration and continued output of the presentation.

As previously described, the objects may be individually included in layers that are associated with an included object's location (e.g. background) and/or movement, e.g., slower or faster in comparison to other objects in the presentation. Insome implementations, each object that corresponds to an object type is included in a common layer. For example, each photograph is included in a background layer while other types of objects are included in different layers as previously discussed inrelation to FIG. 4.

The presentation is then displayed such that the objects exhibit parallax animation (block 506). Continuing with the previous example, one or more of the objects in the presentation may exhibit parallax motion, e.g., parallax pan and scroll,such that the objects may move in parallax as a user drags a finger across the display device 110. For instance, a user may drag a finger across the display device 110 to navigate between screens of the user interface. During this navigation, objectsin the screen may be displayed in parallax. A variety of other examples are also contemplated.

Conclusion

Although the invention has been described in language specific to structural features and/or methodological acts, it is to be understood that the invention defined in the appended claims is not necessarily limited to the specific features oracts described. Rather, the specific features and acts are disclosed as example forms of implementing the claimed invention.

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